Simply walking into Firecakes Donuts is a double-whammy appetizer. The smell of fresh, warm donuts is dizzying; and the sight of all the different varieties on display is overwhelming enough to induce Roadfood panic: How on earth will I have enough appetite to sample all of everything that looks good?
Jane and I originally were taken here by the late Gregg Pill (Chitowndiner), a never-fail tipster who recommended the maple glazed pineapple and bacon donut and the pistachio old fashioned: both outstanding! We also loved a jelly-filled, a coconut cream, and a chocolate espresso. What struck me about every one we ate was not its cleverness, but its quality. The cream donut really is creamy. Chocolate is of the highest quality. The cake part of cake donuts is as buttery as a homemade birthday cake.
I walked out of this place extremely happy and yet frustrated that I did not have the stamina to eat a maple-filled long john topped with candied bacon, a black-and-white (like the cookie), and about a dozen other varieties, not to mention a house-specialty gelato ice cream donut sandwich. I shall return!
Note: Firecakes also is located in Oak Park, at the Wells Street Market, and in Lincoln Park.